Cross Cultural Project Management: Recognize, Respect and Reconcile

Today, project managers need to be prepared to work with and manage multicultural teams that can span the globe. As Thomas Friedman’s book “The World is Flat” states –  if we are to remain competitive in a global economy, we must all be on a continuous journey of learning and curiosity. Many project managers believe that cultural differences can be as detrimental as outdated or inefficient technology is. The members of your project team live and express their culture every day. Instead of avoiding cultural differences, managers and teams should embrace them in a proactive manner. Trompenaars and Hampden-Turner describe 3 steps to help you steer your multicultural team in a triumphant direction. Here are the steps:   1.     Recognize and allow for cultural diversity Every human being is different with unique traits, skills, likes, and dislikes, which should be acknowledged from the outset. As the project manager, aim to understand the business culture of each member of your project. Research your team members. Find out the business culture they are used to working in. Have you worked with them before? Do you know someone who has or someone who can give you tips on how the team member works?…

4 Simple Steps to Successfully Plot a RACI Matrix

Understanding who is responsible for certain tasks and duties is essential for the success of any project. If these aren’t clearly defined, would anything ever be completed? One relatively straightforward model that can be used to clearly identify roles and responsibilities is the RACI Matrix. RACI is an acronym for Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, and Informed. For each task, an individual or group is assigned one or more of the four types of association. In this post, I outline the 4 associations, steps to create your own RACI Matrix, and reasons you might adjust your RACI matrix. I also provide a brief overview of some variations of the RACI matrix. RACI – The 4 Types of Association Responsible The group, role or individual who is assigned this association is in charge of performing the work. They complete this task. Depending on the size and scale of the project, there may be multiple parties “Responsible” for the task and in many cases, this group, role or individual is also “Accountable” for the task. Oftentimes, it is assumed that the Project Manager is “Responsible” for all tasks when in actual fact they should delegate if possible so that other members of the team…

A Quick Guide to 9 Essential Project Documents

What is going to be more successful –  a project with two or three project documents or a project with hundreds of project documents? Unfortunately, there is no “one size fits all” answer to that question; a well-run project may need either and all of the in-between. Projects can vary in size, deliverables, life cycle, scope and that is just the tip of the variable iceberg. What is certain is that project documentation should be clear, relevant and up to date. This will ensure all project stakeholders are on the same page at the same time. Expectations, requirements, resources and risks should be obvious to all from the outset. I recently asked some of my wider community for tips on project documentation and I have summarized my findings in the blog post below. Enjoy and feel free to add your own tips and thoughts in the comments section too!   Questions to Ask Before you Start Project Documentation Prior to kicking off the gathering or developing of project documentation, it is important you first have an understanding of why the project is happening and what type of governance the project may require. This will determine how much and what type…

4 Ways to help with Project Document Management

Document management can be such a headache! Are your projects documents a bit all over the place? A version here, a copy there? Or perhaps two or more people are working on different versions of the same original but should really be collaborating together? There are so many ways that inadequate document management can impact the success rate of your project. Even if your project charter and plan are perfect (should such a thing exist!), getting the correct control on how you mange your project documents must happen in tandem. Your project team must be able to access the right and relevant documents and templates as soon as they need to, without interfering on others. I’ve picked out 4 Ways to Better Manage your Project Documents to help you get on top of your document management using BrightWork and SharePoint and keep the proper controls in place. 1. Bin the Hard Copies I heard an interesting fact lately. There are more mobile phones than toothbrushes in the world today! Regardless if it’s true or not, it’s a safe assumption to say that pretty much everyone has access to technology these days. It’s time now to give the printer a break…